Winner Take All

 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
192   0
Write Review
Winner Take All
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
16+
Release Date
January 30, 2018
ISBN
9781250082886
Buy This Book
      
For Nell Becker, life is a competition she needs to win.
For Jackson Hart, everyone is a pawn in his own game.
They both have everything to lose.

Nell wants to succeed at everything—school, sports, life. And victory is sweeter when it means beating Jackson Hart, the rich, privileged, undisputed king of Cedar Woods Prep Academy. Yet no matter how hard she tries, Jackson is somehow one step ahead. They’re a match made in hell, but opposites do attract.

Drawn to each other by their rivalry, Nell and Jackson fall into a whirlwind romance that consumes everything in their lives. But when a devastating secret exposes their relationship as just another game, how far will Nell go to win?

Visceral and whip-smart, Laurie Devore’s Winner Take All paints an unflinching portrait of obsessive love, toxic competition, and the drive for perfection.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0  (1)
Characters 
 
5.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
4.0  (1)
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

great Courtney Summers readalike

The phrases “beautiful disaster” and “bad romance” but NOT the well-known novels that use those phrases for their titles. Five different Emilie Autumn songs, “Did You Imagine” by Lumidee, and “I Want My Tears Back” by Nightwish. These are just a few of the things that Winner Take All is associated with in my head because all of those things fit the book’s events at one point or another.

Winner Take All is a hate-to-love novel that happens to go through the cycle a number of times. Hate to love to hate to love to hate to looooove… Six-foot-tall explosion of intensity Nell (talls girls in YA, whoo!) and garbage golden boy Jackson are obsessed with each other as they volley for the number-one spot in their grade and I almost obsessively read their book in the span of a few days. At the same time Nell would like to show him what’s what, she’d also like to make out with him–and Jackson feels the exact same way.

Nell hit me in the heart particularly hard as a character, especially because she had a panic attack over a .001 difference in GPA that puts Jackson in the number-one spot. I too was so obsessed with keeping my grades high in school, particularly in my senior year of high school when I wanted to achieve an all-As school year for the very first time. When a print photography project threatened to ruin my grade, I suffered my first-ever panic attack in the middle of a crowded school hallway. My photography teacher witnessed it and kindly waived the print photography project for me.

So yeah, I get where Nell is coming from to a degree. Even then, Nell’s mom (also her prep school’s headmistress) pushes her much harder to succeed than either of my parents pushed me. And to be frank, they didn’t need to push me much at all because I did well with little effort.

Meanwhile, Jackson has a few secrets while he and Nell are dancing around with one another. He’s got a garbage, serial-cheating dad and his mom is wrecked due to the aforementioned serial cheater, but he’s got some humanity hidden waaaaaaay deep down in there. At times, you can’t tell who’s more serious about their relationship: Nell or Jackson. The strength of Winner Take All comes down to the lit-match-meets-gasoline dynamic these two share and the many, many twists in their mutual story.

That’s not to diss the strong subplot wherein Nell’s best friend Lia is dating a guy whose mom is currently prosecuting Lia’s dad for corruption. Lia is a particularly welcome presence in the novel because she’s usually the one calling Nell on any bull. When Nell reaches her most obsessive, it’s Lia who sets her straight by reminding her that Nell Becker is not the center of the solar system. She’s just as much of a mess as everyone else in the novel, but Lia is my favorite mess.

My one bone to pick is with that ending. For a novel that’s outright described to be about “obsessive love,” it ends on a note that feels anything but satisfying. I felt a shot of dread instead because good GOD these two need to exist a significantly away from one another. At least a full state apart.

It’s true: Laurie Devore’s novels are the readalikes for Courtney Summers fans. Winner Take All is even a step up from How to Break a Boy and I’m excited to read the next book that comes from Devore’s hands. It’ll fulfill your desire for imperfect, messy leading ladies in YA!

Was this review helpful to you? 

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.
Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

The Astronaut Who Painted the Moon: The True Story of Alan Bean
As a boy, Alan wanted to fly planes. As a...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
As Far as the Stars
Christopher is the sort of guy that no one notices,...
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
This Cruel Design
The nightmare of the outbreak is finally...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Big Red School (Clifford)
Clifford misses his best friend Emily Elizabeth every day when...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Finding Me by Kelly Gunderman
Tagline: Can you ever truly love someone who robbed you...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Don't Date Rosa Santos
Rosa Santos is cursed by the sea-at least, that's what...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
An unforgettable name… A longing to be invisible… ...
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)
I Got Next
It’s game day! In this action-packed picture book from Daria...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A Friend for Bently
Like all pigs, Bently loves to play in the mud,...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Great Pumpkin Contest
Mimi and Clara are neighbors. Both cats want to win...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Save Your Friends!
This laugh-out-loud adventure encourages family sharing and is a perfect...
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Dibs!
Teaching your little brother his first word —dibs —is funny....
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Where Are You From?
This resonant picture book tells the story of one girl...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Out of Place
When twelve-year-old Cove Bernstein becomes the target of a school-wide...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Salvation Day
A lethal virus is awoken on an abandoned spaceship in...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Bobby Ether and the Jade Academy
When sixteen-year-old Bobby Ether is abducted and brought to the...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

Big Red School (Clifford)
 
5.0
"CLIFFORD: BIG RED SCHOOL follows Emily Elizabeth and Clifford as they create a special school just for Clifford. Clifford loves..."
I Got Next
 
4.0
"I GOT NEXT is a picture book about self-confidence. A boy encourages himself to challenge the other kids who are..."
A Friend for Bently
 
4.0
"A FRIEND FOR BENTLY is a heart-warming story of an unlikely friendship. Bently is the only pig on the farm..."
The Great Pumpkin Contest
 
5.0
"THE GREAT PUMPKIN CONTEST is a sweet and fun read about friendship. Mimi and her neighbor Clara are each entering..."
Save Your Friends!
 
3.5
"SAVE YOUR FRIENDS! is a simple, interactive story told in speech bubbles. The shark is about to eat your friends,..."
Dibs!
 
5.0
"DIBS! is a story about brotherhood. Julian constantly calls dibs on toys and snacks from his younger brother Clancy. Clancy..."
Where Are You From?
 
5.0
"WHERE ARE YOU FROM? is a stunning celebration of heritage/ancestry as well as an acknowledgment of the unnecessary question. A..."
Out of Place
 
5.0
"OUT OF PLACE is an absolutely gorgeous story about bullying and feeling alone. Cove lives with her mother on Martha’s..."
The Startup Squad (The Startup Squad, #1)
 
3.0
"THE STARTUP SQUAD follows primarily Theresa (Resa) as she and a group of three other girls compete in a contest..."
A Possibility of Whales
 
4.0
"THE POSSIBILITY OF WHALES is a middle grade contemporary story that deals with a lot. Natalia Rose (Nat) is almost..."
Peppa in Space (Peppa Pig)
 
5.0
"PEPPA IN SPACE is a fun picture book, featuring Peppa Pig and her family as they learn about space and..."
Pete the Cat and the Itsy Bitsy Spirder
 
3.5
"We are all familiar with the Itsy Bitsy Spider, who climbs up the water spout before being rained out- but..."
Even Monsters Go To School
 
5.0
"This book is so completely adorable it's hard to figure out where to begin. The story is about..."
Can Cat and Bird Be Friends
 
3.5
"This was an odd one. Cat and bird are trying to determine if they can be friends or..."
Pig the Stinker
 
4.5
"PIG THE STINKER follows Pig the Pug on a new adventure- bath time! Pig does not like to bathe, and..."
Little Rabbit Lost
 
4.5
"LITTLE RABBIT LOST follows Little Rabbit as he celebrates his birthday with his family. Little Rabbit wakes up feeling grown..."
Cece Loves Science and Adventure
 
5.0
"Books about girls who love science are always winners! Cece and her friends are trying to win their..."
Hannah Sparkles: Hooray For the First Day of School
 
5.0
"This book is absolutely adorable. Hannah is starting first grade and excited about making friends. Only, every time..."
Turtle and Tortoise Are Not Friends
 
3.5
"Turtle and Tortoise Are Not Friends is a cute children's book that kids will like simply for the fact that..."
Trace
 
3.0
"TRACE is a book about healing. Trace lives with his Auntie Lea after his parents died in a car accident..."